Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Friendlier With Two

It's so much friendlier with two.  ~Winnie-the-Pooh, via A. A. Milne

This morning as I sat ever so peacefully in meditation, I received a nudge. Not the kind that comes from your gut -- you know, the kind that gives you really good insight into something you're struggling with.  It was not an a-ha! nudge.  There was no nudge-inspired flash of enlightenment.

It was a wet nose nudge.

Yes, the nudge I received was Trooper, saying, "Hey, Ma! Could ya scootch back a bit?"  So what did I do, mid-meditation?

I scootched.

Now, I described the scenario once in The Meditating Dog and it isn't pretty. As you can see...
...there isn't a whole lot of space.

Especially when she'd rather sit like...

But I scootched just the same.  We sat rather uncomfortably together for another ten minutes or so, but it didn't matter how uncomfortable we were.  It didn't matter that her spine was rubbing against the my shin bone or that my legs fell asleep because I had them so deeply bent, it didn't matter that regardless of how tight she wound into a ball, she didn't have enough room and one front paw kept sliding out from under her chin to the floor.  Where there's a will, there's a way...and between the two of us, we've got will aplenty.

It didn't matter because in that moment, all that mattered was that we were together.  All that mattered was that she wanted to join in and I was more than happy to let her.  We both sacrificed a little comfort, and I a little concentration, but sometimes if we let go of how we think things should be, look, feel, great surprises are in store.

By opening to possibility, instead of a solitary practice, we may find support. Companionship. Community.  It's not exactly a flash mob, but if we remember how connected we are, if we remember that we are never alone, we are gifted the reminder of how much friendlier life can be with two..or three..or a hundred.  But friendlier just the same.

And I like friendlier, for sure!//

What's For Dinner Tonight?
Well, it seems everyone is eating well this evening!
The squirrels are making short work of the pumpkins,

and the suet I left at their feeder (it is actually for them since this particular brand I got at a discount is despised by the woodpeckers -- who knew they were so pecky picky?!)

The squirrels haven't gotten to their apples yet, but it's only a matter of time...before the deer show up, that is.

The dark-eyed juncos are beginning to vie with the goldfinches for time at the thistle feeder.

And, WE are having Chicken Chalupas!  Left in the crockpot all day and driving me crazy with amazing smells as I type...

Chicken Chalupas
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 pound dried pinto beans
1-7oz can of chopped green chiles
1 red pepper, julienne
1 onion, julienne
2 Tbsp chili powder
2 Tbsp cumin
2 Tbsp oregano
2 Tbsp dried, minced garlic
1 tsp salt

Put the dried beans and spices in the crockpot.  Add the raw chicken.  Cover with water enough to submerge the meat.  Put it on low.  Stir after 4 hours.  Add julienned vegetables.  If it seems dry, add a little more water.  After 6 hours the meat should just fall apart.  Leave on "warm" setting until ready to eat.

Serve with tortillas, sliced avocados (or homemade guacamole), chopped cilantro, chopped tomatoes, cheese, sour cream or anything else you can think of.

Super easy, super fun, super delicious!  We usually do this with pork tenderloin but thought we'd try it with chicken tonight.  If you're feeding a crowd, double the amount and you'll have a ton!

Our guests arrive in two short hours -- I'm not sure I can wait that long!

Remember that rascally Cardinal I told you about?  He's baaaaaack and he wants in for dinner, too!  Sorry buddy!

Especially since dessert is...
Great Harvest Pumpkin Bars complete with cream cheese frosting!  It's days like this that I truly adore my job :)

Wishing everyone a fantastic night!

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